Shaken after losing to India in a cliffhanger, a demoralised Bangladesh will look to end their campaign on a high when they face a rampaging New Zealand in a ICC World Twenty20 dead rubber at Eden Gardens here tomorrow.
Their epic one-run loss from the jaws of victory against India on Wednesday ended the semifinal hopes of the spirited Bangladesh team as they’re winless from three matches.
The Black Caps, who have already sealed a final-four berth, on the other hand, would look to top Group 2 with an all-win record as they have emerged from being a ‘lesser team’ to the team to beat in the sixth edition of the World T20.
With their contrasting campaigns, Mashrafe Mortaza’s men will seek a consolation win and restore some pride but it remains to be seen whether the Black Caps take their foot off the gas ahead of the knockouts.
This will be Bangladesh’s second outing of the World Twenty20 at the Eden and the familiar conditions in front of an expected crowd support closer to home would certainly boost the team’s morale after their heart-aching loss to India.
Opening their Super 10 campaign here, Bangladesh were handed out a 55-run loss by Pakistan but they raised their standards to scare the mighty Australia and India.
Certainly Bangladesh are punching over their weight with their creditable performances against India and Australia and have won the hearts, it’s time that they display some maturity and calm demeanour to win a match.
Two runs needed from last three balls, it’s Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmudullah’s over enthusiasm to go for ‘glory’ shots that cost Bangladesh the match against India.
Tamim Iqbal, Shakib Al Hasan and Sabbir Rahaman have shown flashes of their brilliance and despite the suspension of their two in-form bowlers Taskin Ahmed and Arafat Sunny, Bangladesh have been resilient.
Bangladesh will have to focus and put the disappointment behind so as to secure their first win against New Zealand who have a 3-0 win-loss record in T20Is.
From out-spinning India with a dose of their own medicine, to outmanoeuvring their trans-Tasman rivals Australia, New Zealand were the first to seize their place in semis with a clinical win over Pakistan en route to securing a third victory on the trot.
In the turning wicket of Nagpur, New Zealand have shown their potent spin attack in Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi and the experienced Nathan McCullum to fox India in the tournament-opener.
Their batting depth was also underlined in the previous match when Martin Guptill blasted 80 from 48 balls to lay the foundation for their 180/5 against Pakistan in Mohali.